Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway pushed back on media reports that Donald Trump is considering a shakeup of his West Wing staff, telling Fox News’ “The First 100 Days” Friday night that such stories “do not help the president” and were meant to “distract from the success that he’s had this week.”
The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that Trump is unhappy with the ongoing feuding among his team and has asked his confidants to provide names of possible replacements for Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. On Thursday, a New York Times report detailed what it described as an ongoing battle between Steve Bannon, Trump’s chief strategist, and Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser.
“I work with all these people, I know them all very well, I respect them enormously,” Conway told host Martha MacCallum. “Donald Trump … surrounds himself with a diverse group of people who are brilliant, who have different [areas of] expertise, who have very strong opinions. And this is a man who’s very comfortable receiving different insights and different inputs from people.”
“The question is, will that strength and diversity of opinion stick around?” MacCallum asked. “Is Bannon there to stay? Is Reince Priebus there to stay?”
“I would assume so. That’s up to Donald Trump,” answered Conway, who later added, “I’ve heard nothing but rumors and innuendos and press reports that would make any of us believe anything other than [that] the real shakeup going on in Washington is the way Donald Trump is coming in as a disruptor.”